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Economics of open source library software: evidences from Indian libraries

Raj Kishor Kampa (Department of Library and Information Science, Khallikote University, Berhampur, India)
Purnima Kaushik (Department of Library and Information Science, University of Rajasthan, Jaipur, India)

Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication

ISSN: 2514-9342

Article publication date: 11 January 2019

Issue publication date: 24 June 2019




The purpose of this paper is to study the adoption and use of open source software (OSS) in the libraries of Institutions of National Importance (INIs) in India vis-à-vis their economic impact on adopting libraries. Besides, it aims to study the business model of OSS.


The paper analyses the adoption and use of OSS in the libraries of INIs, India, and their economic impact on the adopting libraries. An online survey was administrated to library professionals of INIs to know the adoption and use of OSS in their libraries and its acceptability. Descriptive statistics and Pearson’s chi-square are used in this study.


The findings of the study reveal that the libraries of INIs adopt and use OSS in integrated library system (ILS) (18.4 per cent), digital repository (95.2 per cent) and library website (65.5 per cent). Koha, DSpace, Drupal and Joomla! are the most favoured OSS among the libraries of INIs. The results reveal that favouring of OSS and having a policy on OSS by the libraries have a positive and significant relationship with their adoption and use of OSS in the libraries. The results of the study show that university libraries of India could save an estimated Rs 417m by adopting open source ILS such as Koha, Evergreen, NewGenLib and ABCD.

Practical implications

The paper will help decision makers to adopt and use open source ILS in their libraries.


This paper is the first of its kind that explores the economic impact of OSS on the adopting libraries and also explicitly discusses the business model of open source library software.



Kampa, R.K. and Kaushik, P. (2019), "Economics of open source library software: evidences from Indian libraries", Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication, Vol. 68 No. 4/5, pp. 337-355.



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